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MathGroup Archive 2005

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Re: Making a presentation to an audience

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg58379] Re: Making a presentation to an audience
  • From: Paul Abbott <paul at physics.uwa.edu.au>
  • Date: Wed, 29 Jun 2005 01:38:02 -0400 (EDT)
  • Organization: The University of Western Australia
  • References: <d9r553$57f$1@smc.vnet.net>
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at wolfram.com

In article <d9r553$57f$1 at smc.vnet.net>,
 "Hugh Goyder" <h.g.d.goyder at cranfield.ac.uk> wrote:

> I wish to set up a slide show for a presentation to an audience using
> Mathematica version 5.1 for Windows. I will use a data projector to get an
> image on a large screen in a lecture theatre. This is the usual standard
> wherever I seem to go. The data projector will map the computer screen on my
> laptop to the theatre screen.
> 
> Most other lecturers will use PowerPoint. Should I use Mathematica in the
> slide show environment and what can I do that is better than PowerPoint?

You can do computations "within" your slideshow environment.

You automatically have beautiful WYSIWYG typeset equations -- that you 
can use and evaluate.

> The following things seem to go wrong.
> 
> 1. In Help under "creating slide shows" it suggests I use the slide show
> pallet found in the menu File-Pallets. I use the pallet to give me a new
> notebook which is a template for a slide show. However, the style sheet for
> the slide show is that for a help browser. Text, input and output are 12
> point, section headings are in 18 point . This is clearly too small. In
> PowerPoint the default text is in 32 point and headings are in 44 point. The
> slide show under "creating slides shows" is clearly not a slide show for
> making a presentation to an audience but a slide show to be read on a
> computer screen.
> 
> 2. I dig around and find on the Mathematica Information centre a download
> entitled "Tips for Mathematica Slide Show Presenters".
> (http://library.wolfram.com/infocenter/TechNotes/5299/ ) This also starts by
> suggesting you begin with the slide show pallet and use the help browser as
> a template. It does not contain a template for a slide show presentation. So
> no progress here. There are some useful points but nothing that gets you
> started. No slide show template with a good embedded style sheet.
> 
> 3. I dig around further and find that I can have slide shows in environments
> Classroom, Demo and Report as well as the help browser. The classroom
> environment looks promising. I try this and find that in the slide show
> environment text, input and output are in 12 point with section headings in
> 16 point. This is clearly not a presentation for an audience. (Am I missing
> something here what are you meant to be doing in the environment classroom
> slide show?). Also, there is no help for putting up buttons that enable you
> to jump to the next slide.
> 
> 4. I am now asking some very fundamental questions: Why is there no
> environment "slide show"? Where are all the style sheets (for a range of
> activities) kept? Why is there no location on the Wolfram site where I can
> download a style sheet for almost any application?
> 
> 5. I am contemplating making a notebook template for a slide show
> presentation to an audience. However, before I start a long task of making
> many changes to a style sheet I thought I would ask the mathgroup for help
> in general and the following detailed points.
> 
> i) Has anyone sorted out a good template for a side show that is to be used
> as a presentation to an audience? It will presumably contain an embedded
> style sheet. Please could they send me a copy?

I have used Mathematica SlideShows for my first year lecture courses on 
AC and DC circuits and Resonance for the last four years. These 
(largish) Notebooks are available at

  http://physics.uwa.edu.au/pub/100/2002/

One thing that I have found very useful is that I included a hidden 
input style in the Notebook's StyleSheet so that I can create or import 
graphics and then hide the code for this. I can make this code visible 
if I switch to 

  Format | Screen Style Environment | Brackets

and hide it again by switching back to the SlideShow environment.

> ii) Does anyone know what is the correct font size to use? I think
> PowerPoint may be correct with its font sizes giving about 10 lines to a
> slide. Slide heading 44 point, text in 32 point.
> 
> iii) Examples of good slides that can be used as templates. For example:
> 
> a) A slide with heading and text (perhaps with bullet points).
> 
> b) A slide with graphics. What ImageSize should I set for a Graphic so that
> it nicely fills the screen? Use of Alt CRC to close the input cell is
> probably a good trick to avoid showing all the construction details.
> 
> c) Small Forward -Previous buttons at the bottom so that I can advance to
> the next slide (so that if you extend a slide by doing a calculation you
> don't have to scroll back to the top to find the point to click.) I know you
> can use page down to move to the next slide but why should I have to walk to
> the lectern where my computer is located and press the button. I want to use
> a remote mouse to advance the slides.

I agree that this would be a good idea. Alternatively, one can use an 
external floating navigation palette.

> d) Any more good ideas or tips for presentations. Perhaps there are things
> you can do in Mathematica that you can't in a PowerPoint presentation?

Like run a computation? Change a parameter and re-compute. Pick up a 
typo and modify equations on screen? In response to a question, take an 
equation and evaluate or plot it using Mathematica?
 
> If I can make a good slide show notebook that can be used as a template I
> will put it together and offer it to the information centre.

A good idea.

Cheers,
Paul

-- 
Paul Abbott                                      Phone: +61 8 6488 2734
School of Physics, M013                            Fax: +61 8 6488 1014
The University of Western Australia         (CRICOS Provider No 00126G)    
AUSTRALIA                               http://physics.uwa.edu.au/~paul
        http://InternationalMathematicaSymposium.org/IMS2005/


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